Why :) in Boston is ^.^ in Tokyo
David Berreby is the author of "Us and Them: The Science of Identity." He has written about human behavior and other science topics for The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, Slate, Smithsonian, The New Republic, Nature, Discover, Vogue and many other publications. He has been a Visiting Scholar at the University of Paris, a Science Writing Fellow at the Marine Biological Laboratory, a resident at Yaddo, and in 2006 was awarded the Erving Goffman Award for Outstanding Scholarship for the first edition of "Us and Them." David can be found on Twitter at @davidberreby and reached by email at david [at] davidberreby [dot] com.
A lot of hay has been made in recent years out Paul Ekman's idea that some basic facial expressions are universal -- that all people express and recognize emotions like anger, fear and disgust in the same way, no matter where they grew up.
In one famous study, for instance, people who lived in an isolated region of Papua New Guinea recognized the emotions in photographs of people from cultures of which they knew nothing.
But a paper published last summer in Current Biology suggests that culture does make some difference in interpreting facial expressions. People from East Asia tend to focus more on the eyes to read a facial expression, write Roberto Caldara and his co-authors. As a result, supposedly universal facial signals that Westerners read as either fear or disgust will look the same to East Asians, the authors write.
The cultural difference is visible in emails, said one of the authors, Rachael Jack. Western emoticons emphasize the mouth to convey emotional states: : ) = happy and : ( = sad, for example. But East Asians represent the eyes instead, typing ^.^ for ``happy'' and ;_; for ``sad.''
Orangutans join humans and bees in a very exclusive club
- Orangutan mothers wait to sound a danger alarm to avoid tipping off predators to their location
- It took a couple of researchers crawling around the Sumatran jungle to discover the phenomenon
- This ability may come from a common ancestor
In a breakthrough for nuclear fusion research, scientists at China's Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) reactor have produced temperatures necessary for nuclear fusion on Earth.
- The EAST reactor was able to heat hydrogen to temperatures exceeding 100 million degrees Celsius.
- Nuclear fusion could someday provide the planet with a virtually limitless supply of clean energy.
- Still, scientists have many other obstacles to pass before fusion technology becomes a viable energy source.
Journaling can help you materialize your ambitions.
- Organizing your thoughts can help you plan and achieve goals that might otherwise seen unobtainable.
- The Bullet Journal method, in particular, can reduce clutter in your life by helping you visualize your future.
- One way to view your journal might be less of a narrative and more of a timeline of decisions.
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